By Wayne Yamada
Rates for transporting dry bulk raw material fell this week after a coal miners' strike in Columbia halted production and reduced shipping activity.
Other factors looked bullish for shipping, however, with high Chinese iron ore prices and potential bauxite demand looking likely to increase dry bulk carrier utilisation.
The Baltic Dry Index (BDI) was 735 on 20 February compared with 751 on 13 February. Capesize, Panamax, Supramax, and Handysize indices were 1,355, 875, 695, and 410 respectively.
Pulling the BDI down was a strike at Cerrejon, Colombias largest coal exporter, which meant around 10 vessels were unable to load coal since the industrial action started on 7 February.